50 Practical Life Tips For 2019

The internet is full of junk, but every now and then you discover something that harnesses the full power of the internet. That something is the “LifeProTips” thread on the discussion site, Reddit. The thread allows people to post practical life tips, which others can upvote. Over the past year, I’ve discovered useful tips like:

  • “When using a public bathroom, choose the first stall” (research shows people go for the middle or last ones)
  • “Keep cookies soft by storing them in an air-tight container with a slice of bread. Cookies will absorb the moisture from the bread, staying ultra-soft for up to two weeks!”
  • “Boarding a Southwest Airlines flight  [or any airline without allocated seating] and want to keep the seat next to you open? Pull the vomit bag from the seat pocket, hold it in your hand, and rest your head on the back of the seat in front of you. No one wants to sit near someone puking” (sounds cool, haven’t tried it yet)

To share the wisdom, I’ve collated the top 50 most upvoted tips of all-time:

1.If you like one song by an artist, but don’t dig the rest of their stuff, find out who the producer is and see what other work they’ve done. The producer can play a big role in how the final song turns out

2. Pay attention to the smell of your home when you come back from a trip – that’s what it smells like to guests all the time, you just get used to it.

3. X percent of Y is equal to Y percent of X. So, if you want to find out what 7% of 50 is, you could instead find out what 50% of 7 is, which is 3.5. This means that 7% of 50 is also equal to 3.5.

4. If you want to learn a new language, figure out the 100 most frequently used words and start with them. Those words make up about 50% of everyday speech, and should be a very solid basis.

5. If your friend owns a business, don’t ask for a friend discount or for some free products, a great friend is one that pays full price to support their friend

6. To all young teenagers looking for their first job, do not have your parents speak or apply for you. There’s a certain respect seeing a kid get a job for themselves.

7. Don’t let people guilt you for not visiting them. They’re not visiting you either.

8. If I (cashier) gives you a discount while shopping at our store don’t demand the same discount with another member of staff next time, we were feeling kind, don’t get us in trouble.

9. If you really want to connect with someone, take them for a long, scenic walk. Not being face to face takes some of the pressure off, and the scenery puts you in the right mood to open up.

10. Think twice before buying someone a gift associated with their hobby. Unless you are just as knowledgeable, you will likely buy something they don’t want or need.

11. If your printer is out of black ink, and you need urgent printout please change the color of the font #010101, which is 99% grey, it will help you quite a lot.

12.  Learn to do — and enjoy — things by yourself. You’re going to miss out on a lot of fun if you keep waiting for someone else to accompany you.

13. Let someone know you’re picking up the tab for a meal AFTER they’ve ordered. This allows a considerate friend to order what s/he wants freely and also prevents a colleague/acquaintance from taking advantage of your generosity.

14. When buying a blanket, always buy at least one size larger than your bed. It’s at least a hundred times more comfy.

15. If ever you need a program you want for free (for example a video/photo editor) don’t search for “free”, search for “open source” to avoid limited trial versions, adverts and malware

16. If your partner/significant other can’t make a decision about where to eat, play the 5-2-1 game. You give them 5 restaurants, they pick two, and you pick from those.

17. If you’re staying in a hotel and need to iron your clothes, send the first few puffs of steam into a towel. It may have been a while since the last time the iron was used, and the steam holes may be filled with nasty brown mineral deposits which you don’t want heat-blasted into your clothes

18. If someone doesn’t appreciate something you do for them, it probably means that it isn’t that important to them. Rather than stew about it or demand recognition, just add it to the list of things you don’t need to do anymore.

19. If you want to divide something among two people (usually kids), you get one person to divide, and the other person gets first pick on which piece they want. Everyone wins and it ensures the person who divides is fair.

20. If someone asks you a question that can be easily googled, please consider the fact that this person might just want to talk with you.

21. Whenever you travel abroad bring a new soundtrack for each place you visit, preferably one you have never heard before. In the future, every time you listen to each soundtrack again they will bring you vivid memories of the places you have visited.

22. If you make a mistake, admit to the mistake, apologize, and explain what steps you’ll take to prevent it from happening again in the future. It’s very hard for people to yell at you if you’ve done that.

23. Millennials, when you’re explaining how broke you are to your parents/grandparents, use an inflation calculator. Ask them what year they started working, and then tell them what you make in dollars from back then. It will help them put your situation in perspective.

24. When your internet provider raises your bill, call in and say “cancel service” to the automated operator. You’ll be sent to their retention team with no waiting on hold. They will usually take $10-20 off your monthly bill for a year. I do this once a year.

25. Take photos of your parents doing things they do every day. When you get older, they will bring back memories more than any posed picture ever could.

26. Almost everyone who is ‘good with money’ shares a common trait: they make a detailed budget for the next month and stick to it.

27. If you have a guest bedroom in your home, spend a night in it yourself to be sure there are no annoyances and that it is comfortable

28. If you constantly vent your problems to someone, make sure to also call them when things are going well. Good listeners can sometimes get overwhelmed, and it’s nice to hear positive news.

29. When things go bad at a job, good people leave, eventually followed by people who thought they could change things but got buried because too many good people left. Those left are bad people or hostages. The good people are your canary.

30. Be careful not to let your guard down in conversations with figures of authority when the conversation is informal, friendly, and non-accusatory.

31. Fifty percent of a job is just being friendly to the right people.

32. Always assume when you’re put on hold that the other person can still hear you.

33. Don’t ask people if they’re free on a certain date without specifying why you’re asking. Simply asking “are you free on Friday?” comes across like you’re tricking the other person into doing whatever it is you want them to do.

34. When making conversation with someone you’ve just met, ask them what they’ve been listening to lately, rather than what their favorite kind of music is – it’s fresh in their mind and they won’t have to pick favorites on the spot.

35. When stressing over something, use the 10-10-10 rule. Will it matter in 10 days? 10 months? 10 years? After getting some perspective, you’ll notice how very few things end up worth stressing over.

36. When you break a glass on a hard floor, shine a flashlight parallel to the floor so you can see the shadows of tiny pieces you would otherwise miss.

37. If Word crashes or shuts down and your document didn’t save, search “.asd” in the file Explorer under “This/My PC”. It should be there.

38. When you spill wine on fabric (clothing, carpet, couch). Dab it carefully with a paper towel to absorb most of the liquid, then pour salt over the remaining stain. The next day, the salt will have absorbed most the wine and you just vacuum it up. This has saved me tons of permanent wine stains!

39. When you’re about to cry, think of words that rhyme or count backwards from 100 in sevens. Engaging the logic part of your brain shifts bloodflow away from your emotional centers and helps you maintain your composure.

40. If a server or cashier at a restaurant gives you extra of something for no charge, and you are later asked by a manager if that employee was doing their job well, don’t mention that they gave you extra food. It could potentially get them in trouble.

41. An argument is when you are trying to determine WHO is right, a conversation is when you are trying to determine WHAT is right.

42. Getting angry with people for making mistakes doesn’t teach them not to make mistakes, it just teaches them to hide them.

43. If you are buying headphones/speakers, test them with Bohemian Rhapsody. It has the complete set of highs and lows in instruments and vocals. (or go to audiocheck. The binaural “knocking” test is scary)

44. Get to know your professors early on. In your later years, good relationships with professors can lead to recommendations and research and job opportunities.

45. If you want to “vacuum seal” food, put it in a ziplock bag and submerge it in a bowl of water with the bag open above the water. The water will push the air out of the bag, and you can close it without any left inside.

46. If you are going to order flowers for someone, call a local florist, not a national flower service. The national place will just call a local place, charge you more and take a cut of the money

47. To block out noise from upstairs neighbors or loud roommates, hook up a Bluetooth speaker with good bass and play a “brown noise” app. The lower bass frequency does a better job of blocking footsteps and deep sounds than typical white noise machines.

48. Just because you’re approved for credit doesn’t mean you can afford the payment

49. When drinking with your boss or manager, always stay at least one drink behind them.

50. When you sign up for anything online, put the websites name as your middle name. That way when you receive spam/advert emails, you will know who sold your info.



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